The silver lining in a slow economy is that smart people get scrappy. With a knack for design and access to dumpsters full of cardboard, architects Seth Grizzle and Jonathan Junker created the booming startup, Graypants.

They use a laser cutter to cut the cardboard scraps and assemble each product by hand.  The lights work effortlessly in any room, emitting warm light and dancing shadows. A serious mood changer.

Walking into the shop reminds me of what the Eames studio would have looked like in the 1950’s. The industrial Sodo space is filled with prototypes, stacks of cardboard, scribbled notes, and lots of young people experimenting and building amazing products. I stopped by last week to find out exactly how these pieces come together.

Who: Jon Junker and Seth Grizzle of Graypants

Jon Junker and Seth Grizzle

What they do: Graypants is a design studio that recently sold more than 2,000 lights to Starbucks and continues to experiment with lighting, furniture, and architectural work. This bootstrapped company began in a small apartment on Capitol Hill and now has design shops in Seattle and Amsterdam.

The Project: The Drum Light

How They Do It: The Drum Light is a perfect blend of glass, steel, and cardboard that takes about three hours to make but can be easy assembled in under two minutes.

Jon and Seth first created the Drum Light in their natural progression to grow and enter more commercial spaces. They worked with 12th Avenue Iron to create a laser cut casting that would both support the shade but highlight the texture and shape. Cutting Edge Glass Studio worked with Graypants to create the perfect glass that would create bright, yet diffused light.

Check out the one minute video above to see how a Drum Light is made.

Lights around town: You can see their lights at Starbucks around the city and on Capitol Hill at Vermilion, Plum Bistro and Nube Green.

Story, video and photography by Annie Laurie MalarkeySee this site for more of her work. Do you have a cool project or creation you’d like to share with the GeekWire community? Please email annielaurie@geekwire.com about being featured in Geek Made. You can also find her on twitter @annieandacamera and on instagram @annielaurie

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